Need help choosing.

lloose

Member
I have been riding a Lectric XP for about a year now. I got it to test the waters to see if I would actually be committed enough to commute to work every day. Long story short, I am. I hate days where I can't. I want to upgrade to something a little nicer. I want something mid-drive because I like the idea of being a little more engaged with riding since with my XP I really don't have to shift gears at all. I love the XP but I really want a quality bike to add to my fleet and use every day. My Lectric XP gets me up the hills just fine so any motor similar in power or more powerful would be great. I don't use throttle really at all so thats not needed.

Here's some bikes I have been looking at. I'm VERY open to other ideas too. I would like to keep it $3000 or under but I can expand it to about $3500 if its the perfect bike. I ride 15 miles every day (7.5 miles to and from work) with some good sized hills. I also ride a lot on weekends, mostly just exploring and getting out of the house.

These are my top pics.
Turbo Vado 3.0
I love that this is 28mph out of the box. I don't ride my XP at 28mph a lot, but I love that its there. Usually, I wouldn't look at Specialized since they tend to be way more expensive than other bike store bikes but the Vado honestly looks amazing for the money. I don't like that its an in-house brand motor but that's not a deal-breaker. I also don't like that it's the top of my budget.

Trek Verve+ 2
20mph but the price is great. I don't mind that its not a semi integrated battery considering the price. Something that drives me nuts though is the quil stem. I'm so used to mountain bikes and threadless that seeing that just gets under my skin. I love that is a bosch motor and understand that its close to the basic model. I don't know how the power would be compared to the XP.

Giant Talon E+
20mph but also not exactly a commute bike. I love the idea of a "do everything" bike though especially since my roads aren't extremely bike-commute friendly. I will cut through a dirt road if I see one. I already have a regular mountain bike though and would never take this on anything single track or smaller than a casual bike trail. The price is great though. I don't know where the CORE motor sits, but I think its a downgrade from last years SPORT. Only big negative I see is no display.

Raleigh Detour IE
20mph but everything else looks great. Bosch Active line motor looks ok. The only problem is that they are out of stock. I can find every other bike on my list at a bike shop within a couple hours drive. I dont mind ordering online but this one just straight says out of stock everywhere. $2400 and Raleigh's reputation put this one right up there at the top of my list.


Kind of interested in these.
Giant Fastroad E+ EX Pro (2020)
Another 28mph bike. Looks great and my favorite LBS is a dealer so he could handle warranty work. I don't know how I feel about a fully integrated battery, especially since its a small one. I know theres a range extender, but im the kind of person who just has another battery with me if I go on a really long ride. This is also the top of my range.

Trek Verve+ 3
This one is low on my list but it's there. It's $100 less than a Turbo Vado and I think I'd rather just pay the extra $100 for the Vado instead.

Giant Explore e+ 2 gts
This one is very low on my list but still there. I don't understand why they downgraded to the Life motor from last year. This one is really expensive for what you get and I don't know why.





Are there any other bikes I should be looking at?
 
Last edited:

WattsUpDude

Well-Known Member
Yamaha Cross Core?

70Nm of torque. Dual chainrings. 500Wh battery. 3 year warranty. Can add bigger tires, fenders, racks for relatively inexpensively if you choose.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove
Mostly availability is going to matter. I tested the Verve 2 for a weekend and didn't like it nearly as well as the Como 3 I bought for about 50 dollars more once both were equipped with rack, fenders, lights, display.
 

lloose

Member
Mostly availability is going to matter. I tested the Verve 2 for a weekend and didn't like it nearly as well as the Como 3 I bought for about 50 dollars more once both were equipped with rack, fenders, lights, display.
Im really lucky, the bike shop im going to has the Trek and Specialized bikes I am looking at in stock. Im going to ride what they have and keep an open mind to any suggestions they have too. I'm still leaning to the Vado or Como right now though.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
No input?
Unfortunately, your post must have been buried in hundreds of "Howdy! I need a 20" fat tire folder with a throttle" posts...
Make a demo ride for sure. You'll certainly like the silent Specialized/Brose motor. If you value comfort, go for Como. Vado feels more sporty.
I don't like that its an in-house brand motor
Specialized/Brose motors are one of the best in the market. They are covered by excellent warranty and LBS support. The thing that makes Specialized solutions unique is perfect connectivity with smartphones and sports wearables.

Interested in your impressions after the demo ride.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove
Im really lucky, the bike shop im going to has the Trek and Specialized bikes I am looking at in stock. Im going to ride what they have and keep an open mind to any suggestions they have too. I'm still leaning to the Vado or Como right now though.
That is the correct approach. Also while you are there, speak to the mechanic if you can. Pay attention to the service area, and if the owner is the mechanic, that's really good news.
 

RandallS

Well-Known Member
Region
Canada
City
Calgary
If your LBS can find you one, last years Fathom E+ might be a better option than the Talon for $100 more.
SyncDrive Sport and 500 Wh battery.
Here's a Link

Full disclosure - I ride a Fathom Pro - which is out of your price range.
Last summer I test drove a Vado4, Como4, Explore +4 (no +2's available near me) , Fastroad, Stance and Fathom but decided on the Fathom e+ Pro MTB as being the most suitable for what I wanted to do.
It was a compromise of course but I have been very happy with it.

Test ride as m any as you can and if you find one you are happy with - buy it. No matter what it is, it won't be around for long!
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
If your LBS can find you one, last years Fathom E+ might be a better option than the Talon for $100 more.
SyncDrive Sport and 500 Wh battery.
Here's a Link

Full disclosure - I ride a Fathom Pro - which is out of your price range.
Last summer I test drove a Vado4, Como4, Explore +4 (no +2's available near me) , Fastroad, Stance and Fathom but decided on the Fathom e+ Pro MTB as being the most suitable for what I wanted to do.
It was a compromise of course but I have been very happy with it.

Test ride as m any as you can and if you find one you are happy with - buy it. No matter what it is, it won't be around for long!
I need to warn the OP:
e-bikes such as Talon E+ or Fathom E+ are expected to be ridden off-road.
Vado and Como are city beasts :)
As I own both a Vado and a Trance E+, I know what I'm saying :)
 

PedalUma

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
All good advice and from the most trusted among us. Yes, thanks it is not someone who wants a 20" throttle monster.
My bias is toward light bikes with small batteries. I also like external batteries and weight about 60/40 toward the rear and low. This bike is the 2020 New Alpenchallenge AMP Sport TWO for $2449 in the SF Bay area at a bike shop. Shamano STEPs. It has an aluminum fork you would want to ditch for something with more compliance(flex) and install wider tires for comfort such as the WTB Byway.
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I mostly ride open source bikes with readily available parts that do not require dealers. Everyone has a different wallet and comfort zone. Getting a locally suported bike that you have ridden or almost the same is the way to go.
 

GenXrider

Active Member
About those Brose motors, that's what Ride1Up will be using on their Prodigy. Not happy to hear that.


 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
You haven't actually ridden a Brose powered e-bike, have you?

The post you have quoted ends with:
I'm now 3100 miles into my 2020 Vado 5.0 and I have had no motor problems. I've replaced the chain every 1100 miles and the cassette every 3100 miles.

FWIW, I'm now 4000 miles into my Vado 5.0 built in 2017.
 

Dallant

Well-Known Member
I feel obligated to mention that you really should try to test an Allant+7. I realize it’s a bit more budget wise but is just a better all around than the Verve family. Best of luck!
 

lloose

Member
The thing that makes Specialized solutions unique is perfect connectivity with smartphones and sports wearables.
I like this a lot too. What actually got me interested in a mid drive bike was seeing the Bosch system that uses your phone as a computer. I realized since then that its a feature on bikes that are way out of my price range, but that got me started down the rabbit hole of connectivity. I like the customization that Specialized gives through their app.
 

Art Deco

Well-Known Member
Region
USA
City
Selinsgrove
I like this a lot too. What actually got me interested in a mid drive bike was seeing the Bosch system that uses your phone as a computer. I realized since then that its a feature on bikes that are way out of my price range, but that got me started down the rabbit hole of connectivity. I like the customization that Specialized gives through their app.
I don't do much with mission control now, but I used it a lot when I first got my Como, and it works very well. I was still paranoid about my battery then.
I still use the built in upload to Komoot ? to track rides, and it doesn't often lose connection like so many bluetooth apps.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
What actually got me interested in a mid drive bike was seeing the Bosch system that uses your phone as a computer.
As far as I can tell it from posts of Bosch-powered e-bike owners, Bosch treat their displays as a self-contained entity, and most of these displays offer either no connectivity or poor/limited connectivity with mobile devices (the newest Nyon could be better, and the Smartphone Hub should work but has other flaws). Specialized have learnt the lesson with the dramatically bad BLOKS display. Now, all new Specialized Turbo e-bikes are equipped with either a controller or display that flawlessly talks with mobile and wearable devices. It is even not necessary to use the Specialized Mission Control app: an alternative BLEvo app (10 Euro) turns your smartphone into a powerful command centre not only connected with the e-bike but also with heart rate monitor.

An anecdote: Whenever I ride out on my Vado, I turn BLEvo on; the major purpose is to flawlessly record all imaginable ride parameters such as ride map, rider's power and cadence, motor and battery temperature, e-bike speed... (over 50 parameters are recorded taking data from e-bike, GPS, HR monitor...) Post-ride, you can save your extended ride data to Strava and even export the data to Excel for detailed analysis! The app has never let me down (and Strava itself is spotty). Also, so few other systems lets you tune the motor from smartphone, and BLEvo allows doing that with 1% accuracy!

I would need to find another system so good yet. For instance, anything I can do to my Giant e-MTB from the smartphone is to set assistance levels but only choosing from very few preset values (other Giant app features do not work as advertised).
 

lloose

Member
As far as I can tell it from posts of Bosch-powered e-bike owners, Bosch treat their displays as a self-contained entity, and most of these displays offer either no connectivity or poor/limited connectivity with mobile devices (the newest Nyon could be better, and the Smartphone Hub should work but has other flaws). Specialized have learnt the lesson with the dramatically bad BLOKS display. Now, all new Specialized Turbo e-bikes are equipped with either a controller or display that flawlessly talks with mobile and wearable devices. It is even not necessary to use the Specialized Mission Control app: an alternative BLEvo app (10 Euro) turns your smartphone into a powerful command centre not only connected with the e-bike but also with heart rate monitor.
I think this alone just sold me on it. I called the bike shop I'm getting it from. With tax refunds, I didn't want to chance someone coming in and buying it, so I put a hold on the bike with a small (refundable) deposit. Thank you.
 

GenXrider

Active Member
You haven't actually ridden a Brose powered e-bike, have you?

The post you have quoted ends with:

FWIW, I'm now 4000 miles into my Vado 5.0 built in 2017.
I haven't ridden a Brose motor e-bike, but the ride wasn't the concern, as I was only referring to the the reports from so many others about the failures with low miles. I know there was a software/firmware update that is supposed to help and other changes at some point, but that belt drive still concerns me. I realize there are people who have ridden thousands of miles without an issue also.
 

Stefan Mikes

Well-Known Member
Region
Europe
City
Brwinów (PL)
Well. Specialized Turbo/Vado User Club is one of the largest in these Forums, and that brand is one of the most popular of mid-drive motor ebikes here. What is very good about Specialized is they learn from their own mistakes and improve their products. Specialized warranty is one of the best in the market.

I need to add the electronics/connectivity that no other brand can assure to that level and totally silent motors (because of the belt drive).

You should at least demo ride a Turbo e-bike before making sweeping statements.
 

GenXrider

Active Member
Well. Specialized Turbo/Vado User Club is one of the largest in these Forums, and that brand is one of the most popular of mid-drive motor ebikes here. What is very good about Specialized is they learn from their own mistakes and improve their products. Specialized warranty is one of the best in the market.

I need to add the electronics/connectivity that no other brand can assure to that level and totally silent motors (because of the belt drive).
But again, my concern wasn't about the ride, the warranty, the popularity, or the silence in itself, just the early failures of Brose motors discussed in that other thread and elsewhere.
You should at least demo ride a Turbo e-bike before making sweeping statements.
What sweeping statement? I don't think I made any. But even if demoing the bike provided the most wonderful ride experience, that doesn't have anything to do with my references to Brose motor failures that you replied to. Best of luck with yours, though.